By Olatunji Omirin, Maiduguri
The International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), has trained 14 election observers on the effective approach to identifying and documenting violence in the forthcoming general elections in Borno State.
In her welcome address, the Country Vice President/National President FIDA, Mrs. Amina Agbaje said this at the capacity building workshop for accredited election observers, on documenting and reporting violence against women during the 2023 general elections in Maidiguri on Tuesday.
She maintained that the training has become necessary to ensure that 14 election observers understand the task ahead of them.
Agbaje represented by State Secretary of FIDA, Barr. Fatsuma Salihu decried the steady decline in women’s participation in politics, especially at the parliamentary level.
“Women constitute a powerful electorate with millions of votes in Nigeria. Women represent about 50% of the Nigerian population despite of this, their level of participation and representation is increasingly very poor.
“Current statistics of women in parliament in Nigeria confirm that women’s representation in parliament is on a steady decline.
“While factors militating against women’s participation are varied, a major cause hindering effective participation of women in politics is the issue of violence”, she explained.
Agbaje maintained that eradication of political violence was key in advancing women’s political participation stressing the importance of condensing political violence before and after polls to allow woto men to participate fully.
“It is on this premise that this capacity building workshop is being organised towards advancing the participation of women in the 2023 general elections by strengthening our selected observers who are being accredited by INEC to identify, observe, document and report incidences of violence against women in the elections.”She said.
She thanked the UNWomen, the Government of Canada for providing much-needed support towards the conveyance of the workshops across the country.